Homeowners: Keep mowers, ATVs out of sight

September 17, 2013

FAIRFIELD COUNTY — Within the past few weeks, several thefts have occurred in the Jenkinsville and southern county line areas of Fairfield County where unknown individuals have been stealing items from residences.

These stolen items are usually lawn mowers (riding and push) and four-wheel ATVs. In some instances, these items have been on trailers and the individuals also have stolen the trailers.

Information gathered indicates that the individuals ride through areas, usually late at night, looking for items visible from the roadway. While the vehicle used by the thieves — usually a pick-up truck — stops nearby, one of the individuals will push the targeted item from the residence to the vehicle where it is loaded.

To date, the investigations have yielded a few arrests. However, information gathered from the investigation indicates that the thefts are possibly part of a larger multi-county criminal organization. The Fairfield County Sheriff’s Office is continuing this investigation while implementing preventive measures.

Owners of lawn mowers, all-terrain vehicles and other similar items are encouraged to keep the items behind their homes or in an area not easily seen from the roadway. Although chain locking property is a good practice, some of the stolen items have been chain-locked. These individuals are equipped with bolt cutters and have easily cut chains.

The public is asked to be vigilant of suspicious vehicles in their areas, particularly those frequenting the same areas and driving in a slow fashion or parked on the side of the road in an area close to residences.

If you see any vehicles such as these, contact the sheriff’s office as soon as possible at 803-635-4141 or dial 911.